Livebloggin' the Draft — 2:26 p.m. CT update

In the immortal words of Jim Anchower,  (warning: contains some references to unsavory things), hola amigos! What’s the deal?

I’m going to try to liveblog the first 17 or so picks of the Draft — ie, up until the point where I actually have to start covering Cardinals picks. I make no claim to being a true Draft expert — for that, see Jonathan Mayo, Jim Callis or Kevin Goldstein — but I have some interest and hopefully some insight.

My friend and colleague Mr. Mayo has the Redbirds taking Kevin Ahrens, which I think makes a lot of sense. Callis’ latest projection is Matt LaPorta, which is hard for me to process — not only because the Cards have a guy named Pujols, but because they have three 1Bmen in their system who are all hitting well, and that IS a position where you can have too many guys. Goldstein named Julio Borbon, who makes some sense, but to me, not more sense than guys like Ahrens or even Beau Mills.

So stick around, hopefully we’ll have some interesting stuff to talk about.



1:07 p.m. CT – First update of the day. An interesting non-Draft-related tidbit: per’s Jordan Bastian, Toronto designated Tomo Ohka for assignment
today. Ohka’s not having a good year, but he’s not the first guy to
have a rough go in the AL East. His career ERA+ is 108, which isn’t bad
at all. If he could be had for little, I think he’d be a very nice



Mayo! Very psyched to see my buddy Jonathan Mayo getting some TV time. Baseball America called this early sequence in the last hour or so, BTW. I’m inclined to think that having two of the 3Bs already taken might reduce the chances of the Cards getting Ahrens, but a LOT can still happen in the next 15 picks.


Well, guess the Cards won’t take Matt Wieters. He seemed very interesting, and there were some reports he would plummet because of signability concerns. But he’s gone at No. 5.


Matt LaPorta to Milwaukee? That’s truly a strange pick. Can’t wait to see what their plans are. The dude can hit, but I’m not sure I see the fit.


A thought on the coverage — it seems to me that ESPN2 would be much better off relying on experts on the topic, rather than on their big names. They really would do well to have more Jim Callis, David Rawnsley and Jonathan Mayo. Rather than cutting to those guys once in a long while, and leaning on Steve Phillips and Peter Gammons, it should be the other way around. ESPN made a star of Mel Kiper — why not lean on the guys who actually know the prospects in baseball, too?


Another 3B off the board. Matt Dominguez is gone, which seems to increase the chances of Kevin Ahrens going to Cincinnati. Which would obviously prevent Ahrens going to STL. One interesting guy who’s still on the board, though, is HS pitcher Rick Porcello. I can’t imagine he lasts all the way to 18, but if he does, he’d be a tremendous pick for STL.

Shocking — SHOCKING, I say — development. The Braves take a HS hitter from Georgia.


What about pitching prospects? Which ones do you think the Cards have a shot at landing?

I don’t think they’ll take a pitcher in the first round, but we’ll see. Maybe with their sandwich pick or a 2nd rounder.


What do you think are the club’s most pressing needs for this draft? What types of players do we need to start developing? Outfielders? Our OF is old, except for Dunc. Or a second baseman, maybe. We have had several in the last 3-4 years? Shouldn’t we try to develop one for a stable future at 2B?

2B are rarely born. They tend to be made. It’s very, very rare that you draft a 2B — usually you draft **** and he makes his way to 2B.

But truly, you just can’t and don’t draft for need at the Major League level. Over the course of the Draft, you can pick for need in terms of depth. But the Cardinals will take the player they believe is the best player at 18.

As for OF, I think that’s one place where the team is pretty deep at the upper levels. Starting LF is not yet arb-eligible, and you’ve got two very promising guys in the high minors — Anks and Rasmus.


That makes sense about the 2B. What I meant by “need” is…do we need to start drafting any specific types of players to develop for the future?
…I knew about Colby and Anks, but thats only two outfielders and what if only one or neither of them ever produce consistantly at the big-league level when they arrive? Or what if we need to trade one for a pitcher or big bat sometime in the near future? Do we just get the best player available, reagardless of position?

Am I the only one who wanted to jump out a window when I heard that we passed on Porcello at 18? Is this just the team not wanting to spend any money? I can see the Cards being high on Kozma, but he seems more like the type of guy you could pick up in the supplemental round. What were they thinking!??

I sincerely hope you are the only one who wanted to jump out a window. Seems a bit of an extreme reaction to a draft pick.


Jumping out the window would have been extreme but your response doesn’t come across as a ringing endorsement, eh? Kozma sounds like a reasonable choice, but Jack Wilson and Mark Loretta (the folks he’s compared to) are fine players but is that the extent of the upside folks really want in a first round draft choice?

What are the odds that the Cardinals will draft local LHP John Flanagan from Belleville West? He has some unbelievable stuff including over 10 innings of no-hit ball in the Illinois State Playoffs. Are the Cardinals interested in him?

The Cards had a chance at a local lefty when they passed up on 6’5″-230 pound Nick Schmidt. The Padres picked him 23rd, and I can promise you they won’t regret it. I saw Nick for two years here at the University of Arkansas, where he broke the school strikeout record about a month into his second year. Nick is from St.Louis (Vianney)originally. But we did pick another AWESOME Razorback hurler in Jess Todd.
To give you an idea of what kind of guy he is, in his first game as a Hog one of our guys was hit by a pitch during a game. Tempers flared and Jess was warming in the bullpen. He sees a guy from the opposing team yelling at our guys from the outfield, so he hops the fence, runs up to the guy, and said simply,”You’re next.” That guy was due up 3rd in that inning but he was taken out of the game before that at-bat. He was afraid, and rightfully so. Jess has a mid-90s fastball, a wicked slider, and a nice change-up.

As for Porcello, I’m glad we passed on him.First of all, Scott Boras. Not worth the trouble considering he’s still a high schooler…See Todd Van Poppel. Of course, if he ends up being great for the Tigers, then there will be grounds for second-guessing. But I’m fine with our picks so far.

I agree with pretty much what all of y’all have said. I was surprised about Kozma mainly because he is a high schooler and I do like the pick of Jess Todd. I guess teams were more interrested in third baseman than pitchers because Scmidt was at one time predicted #8. But one thing that surprised me more than anything came in the 49th round. The Cardinals Picked a guy named Ronald Russell. He went to Hamony Grove High school, a school that I live very, very close to. I’ll have to ask some of my friends that go there if they know him.


Matthew, I noticed something here and wonder whether you’d know if it’s coincidence.

An interesting thing about the talent available this year was the very large number of exceptionally tall pitchers — say 6’7″ on up. However, the Cardinals didn’t draft any of them. The biggest pitcher they drafted was a middle-rounds guy at 6’6″.

Huge pitchers tend to be high-upside, high-risk guys who can sometimes throw very hard but are prone to problems if their mechanics get off. Might the team have been consciously avoiding the risk? Is there a concern as to how such guys would develop in their farm system? Or is this just coincidence?

Long silence here… seems to go along with prior protestations from this location that Brad Thompson is left in despite giving up eight runs in three innings…

Talk about a long silence…it’s been a week since there has been anything to talk about on OYNAG. Maybe it’s time to check out another blog.

Sometimes even I get time off.

Back on duty when the club starts in Oakland.


Typical: people get something (this blog) for nothing and then complain that they don’t get more of it.

Please, please, follow through with your threat: check out other blogs. Somehow the Cardinals and this blog will survive without you.

You know I was just giving you some grief. I’m not trying to tell you hpw to do your job. As for Otter,man, mind your own business jerk.

Public stupidity invites public rebuke. If you act like an *** don’t whine when people throw a saddle on you.

Riiiiiight…What kind of saying do you have for public jerks? Look I have been posting on here with M since the beginning, and if M didn’t detect my sarcasm, then I apoligize to him. You, on the other hand, are way out of line. So I have no more to say to you, Confucious…M, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean for this to go there. I was only cracking wise with you. As you have suggested before, I do check out other blogs anyway. It wasn’t meant to be a “threat” as ottor suggests.

“Shomer freakin’ Shabbos!”

Let me see if I can put this thing to bed so that you, slforre, and I can get back to being Cardinal fans.

1. I got ticked because I thought you were taking a whiny shot at Matthew. Turns out I was wrong, although there’s no way I could have known that.

2. You got mad at me for defending him when I didn’t need to (me being ignorant of the inside joke between the two of you and the longstanding, close friendship the two of you have).

3. So this was basically a misunderstanding between two people who (a) are Cardinals fans and (b) enjoy Matthew’s blog.

Here’s my offer: I’ll not jump to Matthew’s defense anymore. In return, I’d like it if you (or anyone else) would clue everyone in on any inside jokes: this is a public blog, after all.

That’s my olive branch. Deal? Truce? Play ball?

Of course truce! After all we are on the same team here, and we are not Michael Barret and Carlos Zambrano…or Barry Bonds and Jeff Kent… or, well, you get the idea. And I apoligize to you as well. Now let’s cut Kip Wells and bring up ANYBODY!! What do you say? And I’ll just not do inside jokes. Instead I’ll continue to quote The Big Lebowski.

I wouldn’t let go of Wells but I would send him to the bullpen and use him like a pooper scooper: I’d have him clean up other pitchers’ stinking messes like others have been doing for him. Throw him in there to absorb innings when we’ve fallen behind by a touchdown or more, as was the case last night.

Who knows? Maybe he’ll find his groove again. But at the very least we’ll save some better arms for games that can be won.

Good point. What baffles me most is…Why on earth did Tony, Dunc, and Walt put so much stock in this guy? As M said in the mailbag, we don’t have any real options with this guy and we NEED him to do SOMETHING good. But if he continues like this, we’re better off without him. We could at least try to get someone else in here. I know there’s not a lot of good options out there, but any option is as good as 2-11.

This is to ottor. I know that Kip Wells is horrible, but not that horrible. Putting him in as relief would actually make sense, because he’ll give you a good 2 or 3 innings of perfection more than not before blowing the game wide open, so putting him in as a 7th or 8th inning set up man would probably work best with him and moving Ryan Franklin in as a starter would be decent if you ask me, yes he’s had his bad times as a starter, but he’s been better than Kip Wells has so making Anthony Reyes, Ryan Franklin, Brad Thompson, Todd Wellemey (think that’s his name don’t really know), and Adam Wainwright our starters until we get Chris Carpenter and Mark Mulder back would be better than what we’re doing right now and that’s losing.

Please tell me when the trading deadline is because it always confuses me. It seems as tho there are always trades made after. Can you please explain and do you think that the Cards have anyone that anyone would be interested in now? Thank you. Donald Gray

I don’t know when the trading ends, but I can tell you this. They’re not making trades, they’re putting players on waivers, you can receive a player who’s on waivers in a manor similar to a trade.

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